12 Smart Sustainability Podcasts for Startup Leaders - Senior Executive
Sustainability Resources 13 min

12 Smart Sustainability Podcasts for Startup Leaders

Here’s your comprehensive guide to the sustainability podcasts to listen to in 2024.

by Liisa Rajala on January 23, 2024


  • Podcasts featuring ecopreneurs, sustainability experts, and researchers help startup leaders stay abreast of innovative technologies, industry trends, and policy.

  • Common topics covered in sustainability podcasts include data collection and its applications, hydrogen technology, carbon capture, battery storage, electrical vehicles, offshore wind, and materials sustainability.

  • Some podcasts also feature business advice specific to startups in the sustainability space.

With a variety of sustainability-focused podcasts to browse, entrepreneurs have a wealth of information and inspiration at their fingertips. Podcasts provide ample opportunities to stay abreast of industry developments in the sustainability and renewable energy space. Podcasts can also be a source for learning how to fine-tune your business strategy and successfully fundraise, with many investors serving as hosts or guests.

Familiarize yourself with the vast network of ecopreneurs, industry leaders, and other key players speaking about operational efficiency and technological innovations regarding water usage, the electric grid, hydrogen technology, offshore wind, battery storage, and sustainable farming and fisheries. Understand how incoming regulations and self-imposed standards are changing how business and government operate. The incorporation of AI and big data collection also pose interesting changes on the horizon in how software can assist in sustainability.

Senior Executive Sustainability compiled a list of sustainability podcasts to help leaders like you brush up your industry knowledge. We’ve highlighted podcasts essential to startup leaders seeking quality discussions about the most pressing topics, environmental summits and conferences, promising technologies, and market opportunities in this evolving space.

Click on a podcast title below to jump down for more information about it. 

Editor’s note: Companies do not pay to be on this list. This resource is based on independent editorial research. Podcasts are listed alphabetically by show title.

The Senior Executive Sustainability editorial team is constantly speaking with leaders to keep up with new developments and trends in the industry for our collection of sustainability resources. To suggest additions for this resource, please contact Senior Executive Media at editor@seniorexecutive.com.

The Business of Aquaculture

Host Lourdes Gant, managing director of commercial fishing and aquaculture company Manatee Holdings, introduces a variety of guests with a pulse on profitable ecological caretaking of the ocean.

In one episode, global investment fund Aqua Spark dealflow manager Miguel Knudsen discusses the company’s $500 million mark in raised funds for companies such as Matorka, which is transforming Iceland’s geothermal energy and clean water into an ideal fish habitat, and Indonesia-based eFishery’s smart feeding system for fisheries. In another episode, Gant interviews Rishita Changede, founder and CEO of Teoralife.com, about the Singapore-based company’s oral biotechnology that acts as a vaccine for farm-raised fish, preventing disease from pathogens and bacteria.

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Catalyst with Shayle Kann

Shayle Kann of venture capital firm Energy Impact Partners hosts this weekly podcast featuring experts, investors, researchers, and executives. Since 2017, when Kann originally founded “The Interchange” podcast — later bought and run by global energy research and consulting firm Wood Mackenzie — he has developed a loyal following of listeners attracted to his in-depth interviewing style and pulse on up-and-coming cleantech and energy innovations.

One interesting episode is an interview with Duncan Campbell, vice president at Scale Microgrids, who explains how ChatGPT can be used to help code cleantech software. Another episode discusses the dilemma of utilizing deep-sea sources of critical minerals and policy’s limited reach, with guest Renee Grogan, an expert in deep-sea mining and co-founder of Impossible Metals. Kann often dives into policy as well as the technology affecting the ever-changing cleantech and energy industries.

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Energy 360°

Listeners truly receive a comprehensive review of energy and its intersection with regional markets and geopolitics through this longtime podcast hosted by the Center for Strategic and International Studies (CSIS) Energy Security and Climate Change Program.

Notably, Dr. Seong-ik Oh, director general of the Korean Ministry of Land, Infrastructure, and Transport, spoke on the podcast about the differences between South Korea and Japan’s energy policies and the factors that led to these strategies. Other podcast episodes dive into the energy landscape and forecasting in China, India, Ukraine, and Europe and the state of U.S.-EU energy cooperation.

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The Energy Gang

Under energy research and consultancy Wood Mackenzie, former Financial Times energy editor Ed Crooks hosts this popular podcast offering bi-weekly discussions on the latest trends in energy, cleantech, renewables, and the environment.

In September, the podcast dove into the U.S. Department of Energy’s announcement it would invest $1.2 billion in two direct air capture facilities to remove CO2 directly from the atmosphere. Another episode features in-house and external industry experts about the volatility in investment markets for once-prominent solar companies. The show also covers the renaissance of U.S. nuclear energy with a panel including Katy Huff, assistant secretary and head of the Office of Nuclear Energy at the Department of Energy.

  • Apple Podcast Rating: 4.8 stars
  • Review Bite: “This podcast isn’t the most scripted. It’s not as narrative as some others such as those from Canary Media. But they interview experts. And the way they can discuss and debate these topics is highly enlightening and entertaining. Highly recommend.” — afugior; April 20, 2023
  • Typical Run Time: 30 – 50 minutes
  • 1st Episode: The Energy Gang podcast: Extreme weather keeps maxing out the grid” — July 8, 2021

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ESG Insider: A podcast from S&P Global

This podcast, produced by S&P Global, offers a comprehensive overview of environmental issues shaping industries. Co-hosts Lindsey Hall, head of ESG Thought Leadership at S&P Global, and Esther Whieldon, senior writer of the same team, often interview sustainability and finance leaders about how businesses and financial institutions are changing their investment strategies in response to dynamic environmental standards. 

One of its most popular episodes highlights a report on sustainable finance taxonomies, a classification system that identifies which economic activities are considered environmentally friendly, effectively shifting trillions of dollars into nature-positive investments and away from harmful activities. Other notable episodes cover the introduction of two standards issued by the International Sustainability Standards Board (ISSB), disclosing the effect of climate-related risks and opportunities on a company’s prospects, and speaking with innovators in the energy sector on balancing energy security, energy sustainability and energy affordability.

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Everything About Hydrogen (EAH)

Hydrogen is a hot topic in the world of renewable energy. The EAH podcast has it covered, hosted by experts in different areas of the hydrogen industry — Alicia Eastman, president of green fuels company InterContinental Energy; Christopher Jackson, CEO of UK-based green hydrogen energy company Protium Green Solutions; Andrew Leedom, general counsel for hydrogen generation, transportation, and storage company BayoTech; and Patrick Molloy, manager of climate-aligned industries at global energy nonprofit RMI. The four co-hosts regularly speak with private and public sector experts about current events and policy impacting hydrogen and the fuel cell landscape.

In a recent episode, EAH spoke with Paul Barrett, CEO of Hysata, an Australian electrolyser manufacturer. The company has been validated for producing ultra-high efficiency commercial electrolysers, a critical technology for producing low-emission hydrogen from renewable or nuclear electricity. Another episode features innovator Maciek Lukawski, head of strategy at sustainable energy startup Amogy, who explains ammonia fuel cell technology and his company’s rapid growth backed by investors such as Mitsubishi. For an overview of policy matters around the world, listen to the episode featuring The Hydrogen Council.

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Data scientist Billy Fetzner delivers a dose of climate positivity, interviewing mainly ecopreneurs but also investors and digital marketing experts about leading startup sustainability solutions and business advice.

Popular episodes include an interview with Adam Tank, co-founder of Transcend, a software company that automates the design of more than 10,000 water treatment and electrical substation facilities around the world. Another episode explores environmental services firm APChemi’s conversion of plastic and biomass waste into fuel. Investors, including DC Palter of Pitching Angels and Lauren Washington of Fundr, provide advice on finding the right funding solution to grow sustainability-focused startups.

  • Apple Podcast Rating: 5 stars
  • Review Bite: “I love hearing all the different viewpoints from so many different ecopreneurs out there that are doing such great work. It inspires me to keep working on my green business every single week!” — Bugala23456; June 29, 2022
  • Typical Run Time: 20 – 40 minutes
  • 1st Episode: What is GreenBusinessImpact Podcast?” — May 29, 2022

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Hardware to Save a Planet

In this biweekly podcast, Dylan Garrett, head of climate tech business at hardware technology company Synapse, highlights physical technical innovations addressing climate challenges. Topics covered range from renewable energy to waste and recycling systems to agricultural sustainability.

A recent episode features Devon Wright, co-founder and CEO of California-based agricultural tech company Lumo. He discusses his firm’s use of cloud-managed irrigation valves to conserve groundwater while helping farms operate efficiently. Another guest of the podcast has been Julian Turecek, CEO of AspiraDAC, who spoke about how his company captures CO2 from the air by using metal-organic frameworks as carbon-absorbent materials.

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The Keep Cool Podcast

In this biweekly podcast, climate tech analyst Nick van Osdol speaks with climate tech entrepreneurs and investors about the latest technologies offering solutions and broad trends in the industry. 

One episode features Chris Tolles, CEO and co-founder of soil carbon measurement technology Yard Stick PBC, who discusses the challenges and opportunities in the emerging field of soil carbon and regenerative practices for farmers and ranchers. Another episode explores the role of federal policy and its importance in accelerating the carbon removal industry with guest Giana Amador, executive director of the Carbon Removal Alliance. In a different episode, Markku Koivisto of drone data marketplace platform Globhe explains how sophisticated drone operators, with the help of 5G technology, can collect high-resolution earth observation data at scale to the boon of researchers, businesses, and governments.

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My Climate Journey

With more than 450 episodes since it was founded in 2019 by entrepreneur Jason Jacobs, “My Climate Journey” features conversations with science, technology, and climate leaders who discuss a broad scope of issues in the sustainability space.

A recent episode features Mantel, a company developing technology that can sit next to industrial equipment and capture its emission. In another episode, Nobel Laureate Dr. Carlos Nobre lays out a roadmap for Brazil’s climate future. And in yet another episode, Tom Price, CEO of EcoSafi, which builds cook stoves and biomass fuel pellets, discusses the challenge of finding clean cooking fuels in Africa.

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Renewable Energy SmartPod

Podcast host Sean McMahon, director of energy, finance, and infrastructure content at SmartBrief, interviews industry leaders and regulatory experts about the top trends and legal implications facing the energy sector.

In its 50th episode, Mike Wietecki, senior vice president of strategy and regulatory affairs at Oregon-based Powin Energy Corporation, takes a deep dive into the growth of battery energy storage and how the Inflation Reduction Act has provided additional momentum. In another episode, Gridmatic leaders Matt Wytock and David Miller explain how their California-based energy marketplace platform leverages artificial intelligence to help companies match their energy consumption with renewable energy sources. They also discuss how to manage computer-powered technologies’ own energy consumption.

  • Apple Podcast Rating: 4.9 stars
  • Review Bite: “Great to listen to a very informed interviewer and their guests addressing some very important issues that impact our regional energy systems…past, present and future. I was very impressed by the interviewer’s knowledge and questions.” — millertime233; April 27, 2021
  • Typical Run Time: 20 – 40 minutes
  • 1st Episode: A conversation with FERC Chairman Richard Glick” — April 5, 2021

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Reversing Climate Change

Nori, a Seattle startup that sells carbon credits to individuals and businesses to offset carbon emissions, delivers this podcast, hosted by company co-founder Ross Kenyon. It features technologies and organizations focused on removing carbon dioxide from the atmosphere and reversing climate change.

In one episode, Lyn Stoler and Sonam Velani, co-creators of research and storytelling project Parachute, discuss the history behind regulations and permitting processes that slow industrial building. In another episode, Wendy Owens, CEO and founder of biomaterials company Hexas Biomass, discusses the importance of using marginal lands for biomass production, which can help to avoid competition with farming. She also highlights how their potentially carbon-negative XanoFiber can be used to create products ranging from clothes to building materials.

  • Apple Podcast Rating: 4.8 stars
  • Review Bite: “Reversing Climate Change has expanded my knowledge of and connection to the climate community in the most delightful way. Ross and the other hosts ask great questions EVERY TIME that lead to unique conversations and leave me pondering episodes for a while afterwards.” — Christi, go bruins; March 31, 2021
  • Typical Run Time: 40 – 60 minutes
  • 1st Episode: 1: Paul Gambill, CEO of Nori” — Dec. 6, 2017

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Our Senior Executive Sustainability editors are always adding to our collection of resources for sustainability leaders like you. From a list of sustainability startup accelerators to a guide to professional organizations for sustainability leaders, our collection of additional resources offers ideas and inspiration.

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